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As of July 2010, all residents of the State of Israel up to age 8 became eligible to receive a comprehensive set of preventive and restorative dental services within the framework of National Health Insurance. Over the coming three years, the eligibility cohort will be gradually extended to include all children up to age 14.
The initiative was conducted in order to improve accessibility, improve oral health status, reduce household expenditures and enhance system efficiency.
A policy paper was prepared by a sub-committee of the National Council for Women?s Health. The recommendations aim at creating a healthy nutrition environment to promote family health emphasizing the role of women, and using windows of opportunity for counselling. The recommendations include educational, clinical and legislative measures as well as supervision and enforcement. The program includes financial and legal incentives and measures to increase intrinsic motivation for nutrition change.
In 2007, a major new funding initiative was launched for the development and provision of spiritual care services and training programs in Israel. During three years ten programs were developed. This impressive development was considered important and of unique contribution to patients. At the same time the services face challenges in growth and implementation.
The first Equality Report of Maccabi Health Care Services identified disparities in health outcomes by socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds of members, serving to identify groups at risk for worse outcomes. Consequently, Maccabi has decided to adopt equity as a major strategic goal and to implement a set of measures to reduce disparities: cultural adaptation of services; adoption of community-orientation in care; and preferrential allocation of resources to its social peripheries.
Until recently co-payments were collected for well-baby care provided during the first eighteen months of life. In January 2010 this co-payment was eliminated with the objective of removing a financial barrier to access which was problematic mainly for low-income families and those with many children. The change was highly consensual as all stakeholders recognized that co-payments for preventive services do not reduce overutilization of care but rather lead to underutilization of care.
An evaluation of the Hadassah Information Center highlighted achievements and provided recommendations for enhancing the efficiency and quality of services. The Center adopted many of the recommendations including: improving the computerized data base; special training of volunteers to conduct follow-up calls for further assistance in acquiring care, actualizing rights and benefits; increasing visibility of the Center; and planning for future structured cooperation with external resources.
The purpose of the policy is to reduce morbidity and mortality related to the N1H1 flu epidemic and to preserve a normal functioning of the Israeli society. It includes multi-system cooperation between primary emergency and tertiary care, centrally coordinated by the ministry of health. The main principles are full transparency and uniform messages to the public to promote compliance with behavioral recommendations.
The general adminstration published a circular regarding development of palliative care service in the community, general hospital and nursing institutions in order to turn palliative care into an integral part of the treatment proccesses. The services will be included in the basket of healtthcare services provided to HMOs members specified in the second appendix in accordance with the National Health Insurance Law and will be provided to a patient during several months before his/her death.
This innovation relates to a new information technology that integrates medical records and medical information from various care settings in the community and in hospitals. If regularly used by medical staff, the system was expected to assist in improving continuity and quality of care, avoiding dangerous medical mistakes, and reducing costs related to duplications. An evaluation study found that the new system had achieved some, but not all, of its objectives.
All infants and children have traditionally been eligible for receiving the vaccine schedule determined by the Ministry of Health. The advent of a number of new and expensive vaccines on the market in recent years, in a period of decreased public funding, resulted in financial barriers to the provision of universal access to these vaccines. In 2009, the pneumococcal vacine was adopted, in keeping with a staggered program for introducing the new vaccines.